Female Drinking And Driving Arrests On The Rise

drinking and drivingIt seems like the news is always reporting about drunk driving crashes and arrests involving men, but recent FBI statistics are now showing that driving under the influence (DUI) arrests for women have increased, and women have been found to be causing an increasing number of alcohol-related crashes as well.

The data was taken from FBI statistics with dates ranging from 2003 to 2012. During that time frame, female annual DUI arrests increased 21 percent, from 174,000 to 211,000 arrests. It’s interesting to note that the same statistics showed a decrease in DUI arrest for men, with a 17% drop over that time frame.

One of the reasons why researchers believe there has been an increase in female DUI rates is because more and more women are in the workforce. Just like men, women are forced to commute long distances and drive at night. There are also those who feel the rising number of female DUIs could be due to increased work stress and relationship issues, with women needing to work harder and longer to keep up with men in the workforce.

It’s not only the workforce women are keeping up with. Women are also joining the ranks of frequent social drinkers. Not only are teens drinking at young ages, but teen binge drinking involving girls is on the rise. It might be that teen drinking is carrying over into the workplace as these girls grow up, or those women who begin drinking at early ages match men drink for drink in social situations.

It’s a known fact that alcohol affects women and men differently – due to the way they metabolize the alcohol, if a women drinks the same glass of beer a man does, she would have a higher blood alcohol level than he would. If both were pulled over on suspicion on DUI, the man may not blow over .08 but the woman could.

Although the statistics do indicate that female DUI arrests are on the up swing, the data still shows that men are still being arrested for drunk driving at a ratio of 3 men to 1 woman.

The higher number of women being arrested for DUI means there are a lot more drinking drivers on the roads today. The good news is that new ignition interlock laws for first offenders are being put in place across the USA, and both law enforcement and government officials are working together to curb drinking and driving.